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Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Put Away Childish Things

 

“I am sure you have come across older people who behave like children. They want everything, whine for attention, bitch about the smallest things and argue about virtually everything. They stopped growing up at some point but continued growing older.”
― Saidi Mdala, Know What Matters


The day began in the usual fashion:


I'm not entirely sure what this was in response to -- if indeed it was a response to something I actually said and just not some spontaneously generated Budweiser fueled 2AM outrage at something he thinks I might believe.

Let's take each point in order:

"Hey coward, you're also a self righteous prick."

Also?

I mean, you start out with a conjunction? A connector to another thought? Also what? Why do I feel like he's been in this conversation longer than I have?

Maybe he forget an introductory paragraph? Also.

Grade school English aside, he might be right.

I might be a coward. I have a bunch of medals here from my military service that say otherwise, but I admit anything is certainly possible.

I've been called worse.

By better people.

That said, I comfort myself with the fact that coward though I might be, I at least don't send anonymous hate mail to random strangers on the internet.

I actually own what I say. I put my name on it, in front of half a million people every day.

I don't know if that's courage or not, but I can tell you that it very often makes me wish I was back in Iraq. As dangerous as that job was, it was often a great deal less shitty, insane, and soul draining than dealing with my own countrymen on the internet every day.

As to being self righteous prick, I admit that is likewise a possibility.

Others have made similar observations. Perhaps I should endeavor to be more humble, friendly, and less self-confident like my modest critic?

No?

No, I suppose not. And frankly, I'm not sure my readers would respond well to a suddenly unassuming and self-effacing Jim Wright.

Self-righteous prick suits me.

"You're happy to bully people who will be screwed under. Biden administration into voting for your own interests. [sic]"

Ah, now we're getting somewhere.

Again, he might be right.

Yes, he just might be.

You see, my interests are liberty, justice, and equality for all.

I want a poor black woman to have the same exact rights, respect, and opportunity as a rich white man.

I want the hungry to have enough to eat.

I want the sick and infirm to have medical care. I want the hale and healthy to have it too.

I want the homeless to have shelter and comfort.

I want the wealthy to pay their fair share.

I want the working stiff to have a living wage, good benefits, a safe and modern workplace, an expectation of a decent and timely retirement, and a say in how things are done.

I want every student to have a comprehensive quality education in a safe and violence-free environment and the realistic chance at higher education without a lifetime of crushing debt.

I want corporations to share equally in the risks they force onto the public, and I want the public to share in the vast profits businesses reap from the exploitation of public assets, land, and resources.

I want a nation that holds the peacemaker in higher regard than the warrior and employs the reasoned skills of the diplomat before the violent physicality of the soldier.

I want a society that tears down statues of generals and raises up instead monuments to the teacher, the artist, the engineer, the healer, the bridge builder, the homemaker, the mechanic, and the garbage man -- those everyday invisible unknown heroes who keep the wheels of civilization turning.

And most of all -- most of all -- I want a government that is accountable to its citizens and I want rational citizens educated, willing, and determined to hold that government to account every single day without regard to political party or ideology.

What I really want is a better nation, a better world, dedicated to a better future for all and not just a privileged few.

THOSE are my interests.

So, yes indeed, if you stand against those interests, if you're one of those selfish sons of bitches who get "screwed" under a new administration that seeks to make those interests a reality? Why, yes, then I'll gleefully mock your impotent fury every single day without pause.

I will.

Just as I mock the failure of Confederates, the Klan, Nazis, racists, bigots, sexists, and florid toothless little haters just like my critic.

"Nothing worse than a piece of shit who believes his own interests make him righteous enough to justify his bullying."

Heh heh.

Though I have no proof -- because as previously noted, he left off the introductory paragraph that would have explained the impetus of his complaint -- I strongly suspect this is in response to something I said the day before. To wit:

(A commenter complained that I wasn't showing the proper respect to recently deceased Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and that I shouldn't make her death into a political statement because that makes those liberals and progressives who didn't vote, or who threw their votes away, feel guilty)

I respected Justice Ginsburg just fine.

It's people like you, you miserable son of bitch, that I have no respect for. People like you who put the burden of your duty on an 87-year-old cancer patient so that you could have the luxury of throwing your vote away, of not showing up, of using your precious franchise for some idiotic protest, instead of doing your goddamned duty like a citizen. You screwed us all. You fucked over the most vulnerable members of our society solely so that you, you smug asshole, could pretend you have principles. You fucked not only us, but generations.
Now? Now you can own it. This is on you and nobody else. You don't deserve the Republic.
So, don't you dare come at me, you fucking ghoul, and demand respect. Because I'm fresh out.
Harsh?

Perhaps. But these are harsh times we live in. Sugar-coating it and coddling those who steadfastly refuse to do their civic duty doesn't seem to be working.

And to be honest? These people piss me off. Here we are on the very brink of fascism if not already over the edge, on the very verge of losing everything these perverse sons of bitches claim they care about, and they still won't accept responsibility for their own actions.

So, yeah, I'm a little harsh.

If you see my comment as bullying, well, that's just too goddamn bad.

No one is making you read my comments or hang around my social media feeds. I don't seek you out. You came to me, to boast about how you refuse to do your civic duty. So, if you don't like what I have to say or how I go about saying it, shove off. If you don't, that's on you. I'm not going to pull my punches for a bunch of shitty self-involved little snots who can't be bothered to show up.

OR for a bunch of wannabe fascists.

Because frankly, at this point, there's not a lot of daylight between the two.

If you think that's bullying, well, then you should perhaps have a talk with your president -- and he is your president and make no mistake, but we'll come back to that. Your president who daily uses the most powerful platform in the world to bully his political enemies, the weak and helpless, the crippled, the hungry, the tired, the homeless, and the soldier alike, all of those people you claim that you care about -- just not enough to actually show up and pull the handle for better leaders. And then he goes golfing.

Perhaps you should look to those of your persuasion who march on the capitol with their guns and their bibles and threaten to visit violent murder upon their neighbors.

Perhaps you should see to those who would kneel on a black man's throat while those like you righteously cheer on that oppression in the name of "law and order."

And while you're at it, have a talk with your miserable small capricious god about how his shitty followers, people like you, think they have the right to tell a woman what she can and cannot do with her own body, who think they have the right tell others who they can love, who they can marry, and what they can do in the privacy of their own homes. So long as we're accusing others of being self-righteous and all, I mean.

And perhaps instead of sending hate mail and threats to others on the internet, perhaps you should spend a few minutes looking into the mirror and ask yourself who the real bully is.


What's that?


You're a not a Trump supporter?

Huh.

Oh, I see, you're a Democratic Socialist, are you? With your little rose and your framed picture of a sparkling unicorn. Yes, I see.

And you stayed home, right?

A lot of your fellows, they went to the polls and they voted for a candidate they didn't particularly like. But not you. You stayed home. You threw your vote away.

You know what?

Those who stood silent while the Nazis herded Jews into the gas chambers may not have been card-carrying fascists themselves, but they might just as well have been.

And that's you.

You refused to make the adult choice, and so it was made for you, by those you claim to despise the most.

You're not a hero.

You're not righteous.

You're just another complicit stooge.
"People like you, wretched, entitled, boomer filth, is the reason 50% of the country didn't vote in 2016 and will sit out 2020."
And now we're down to it, aren't we?

The bitter crux of the matter, yes.

Somebody was mean to you on the internet and so you stayed home and pouted with your little bottom lip stuck out. The Nazis are marching in the streets of your nation, and there's you, sitting on the bed, arms crossed, holding your breath until you turn red.

Your candidate wasn't the nominee.

You didn't get what you want.

So you stayed home in petulant fury.

Boy, you sure showed us.

But here's the curious thing about your rage: According to you, I'm a horrible, self-righteous cowardly prick, right? "Wretched entitled Boomer filth," that's what you think of me, those are your words.

And yet -- and yet -- that's who you expect to do your job.

That's what you're saying here, isn't it?

Cowardly wretched entitled Boomer filth that I am, and yet I showed up.

I show up every time.

Where the fuck were you?

You don't show up.

By your own account: YOU. DON'T. SHOW. UP.

And you wonder why the world never goes in the direction you want?

Those like you don't show up, because those like you never do.

It's got nothing to do with the candidates.

It's got nothing to do with the choices.

It's got nothing to do with the system.

And it's for goddamn sure got nothing to do with me.


You don't show up because that's just who you are.


And this bluster and outrage? It's just an excuse.

Because that's all you've got, excuses. That's what defines you. Excuses. Not showing up. You can write hate mail, you can rage on the internet all goddamn day, but you just can't find the time to go vote. Instead, you expect somebody else to fix the world.

Somebody like me. A person you despise.

Why?

Because you're a child, that's why.

You're a child.

You want to talk about entitled? You expect everybody else to do the grunt work of democracy for you -- like your mom picking up your dirty laundry scattered all over your room and washing it for you and putting it away in the drawer all neatly folded and smelling of fabric softener.

You throw a tantrum when the world gives you choices you don't like, when you have to work for what you want instead of having it handed to you.

So you sit home and pout and blame everybody else.

Hell, you can't even be bothered to do the bare minimum as a citizen. Instead you dress yourself up in some imaginary "Resistance" like a kid playing at Star Wars and pretend you're actually doing something by sending hate mail to random strangers on the internet.

Because you're a fucking child.

You're an immature little turd whose life will never amount to a goddamned thing, nothing but daydreams and outrage and endless excuses. Your mom will be picking up after you your whole damn life. Your entire worldview is that of a child. Your politics are those of a spoiled little brat. You call me a coward, but you expect an 87-year-old woman with metastatic terminal cancer to do the heavy lifting for you and you can't even put forth the bare minimum effort of showing up to vote -- and then you announce that dereliction of duty as if it's some sort of accomplishment.

You seem to think nonperformance is a statement.

And it is.

But your petulant impotence is very likely not the message you think it is or much of a reflection on the generation you claim to speak for.

You, you fucking child, you're why the world is what it is.

Yes, others and other generations fell down on the job too. But that doesn't excuse you, because you could look to their pitiful examples see the cost of your cowardice. You saw that and still you elected this cretin, and it hardly matters if it was with right wing MAGA hat wearing malice aforethought or out of some pot smoke scented far-Left indolent spite.

You want a better world, but you won't do even the minimum work necessary to make it so.

You claim to care about others, but you'll sacrifice the most vulnerable if you don't get what you want. Burn it all down, you shout. You're not a patriot, you're just another goddamned arsonist. You blame others, play the victim, and watch from the bed while your mom picks up your dirty clothes.

And because of that, that's all you'll ever be: a victim of your own failure and selfishness.

Your threat to stay home isn't much of an ultimatum. Go on, stay home. Leave the world to those you despise. That'll show us.

We'll be out there, holding back the fall of night, without you. Same as we always do.


“With President Trump, however, the masculine archetype seems to have regressed. Trump is less the strict father than the petulant child: a boyish figure who rejects advice, shirks discipline and refuses to be beholden to behavioral norms. He is rarely even seen as the patriarch of his own family; as Melania Trump said after he was caught boasting about assaults on tape, “Sometimes I say I have two boys at home.” ― Amanda Hess

 

“Trump taught us how easily seemingly serious people can become profoundly idiotic. He turned career politicians into circus freaks.” ― Thor Benson

80 comments:

  1. You, Jim Wright, are my hero. I can think of no one who says it better, who gets all the angles, exposes the drivel that so many politicians spout, who knows the right path that will let people of all walks take safely. You make my day better when I get to read one of your essays. thank you

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  2. Thank you. I vote. I have voted in every election since I was of age. My children vote. This is a duty. A privilege. A joy. This is MY country and how can I possibly claim it, if I am not willing to do the work of voting? Thank you, again. LONG but well written and very, very true.

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  3. Thank you, Jim, for so eloquently putting into words my emotions. I have voted in every single election since 1972 as a 19 year old. Every single one. Even when my vote didn’t produce the winner, I voted. Those who stay home are cowards! So thank you for writing the words that I could not.

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  4. Thanks for making feel not so alone out here!

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  5. Pouting, petulant people/children are the direct result of helicopter and/or lawnmower parents, but the statute of limitations runs out at 30 years of age. Protesting by not participating is one of the most destructive self-delusions that unfortunately has consequences for society as a whole.

    Karen

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    1. THIS. I'm 26 years old and I am trying to convince my younger friends that this is the case, but they do not seem to care. They are going to make the same mistake I did in 2016 (I supported a third party candidate because I mistakenly believed that they had a fighting chance as an idiot 22 year old who fell for libertarian propaganda, not that it mattered much since I'm from a solidly blue state, but still). They want self-serving candidates. Someone they believe is the best representation of what they want and not what is best for our society as a whole. It's inherently selfish and deeply concerning. Their go-to refrain is "well if everybody voted third party..." and it's like yelling at a wall trying to convince them that that's not going to happen unless there's a complete override of the system. And comparing someone who is systematically working to dismantle our entire democracy to someone who was creepy a couple times is soooooo stupid. The two are not equal. One is definitively worse for society but they don't care because they (for some reason) see them as equally evil. Sorry for the rant I guess I had a lot to say on this subject.

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  6. Jim Wright, you have a way with words. I really love it when you take the rantings of the entitled idiots are fire it right back at them. You deserve the Right Honorable Order of the Trebuchet, which you share with David Gerrold, another amazing writer who takes no prisoners. I am 75 years old, female, and have been the family breadwinner for most of my embattled life. I was gainfully employed for over 50 years, own property, pay taxes and vote. And I am profoundly thankful for writers like you and David, who articulate my rage far better than I ever could on my best day. Let's get this done.

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  7. Thanks Jim.
    I'm so tired of the unicorn voters telling me that their lack of voting is somehow my fault.
    Can anyone imagine what the court might look like now had they bothered to show up four years ago?

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    1. Lawsy, you took the words right out of my mouth. And that they still, to this very day, are doing exactly that and blaming those of us who do the work rather than owning what they have done for election after election just tells me they're closer to the people actively causing the damage than they are to what they SAY they want.

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  8. This librarian knows good writing when she reads it. Donated. Be well and keep writing.

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  9. Thank you for writing and posting this .. I have been "showing up" and voting ever since I became old enough to vote. This year I feel very old, worn out and exhausted from the "Trump Criminal Regime" .. RBG's death makes some very dark days appear darker .. yet if I am alive to vote .. again I will show up and vote .. I keep telling myself that SHE never gave up .. no matter what .. you too are one of my heroes .. you put into words what I and so many others believe needs to be said and you say it very well!!! Thank you!!!

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  10. Rarely have I ever read anything that unpacks and exposes so well the impotent, entitled rage that lies at the center of the people who blame everyone else but themselves for the consequences of their own lack of action and moral fiber. Thanks for the work you put into this. Speaking as a fellow writer, you regularly inspire me to put more effort, more brutal introspection, and more honesty into my own writing.

    Bravo!

    Kelley

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  11. Thank you. You verbalize so eloquently what I feel.

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  12. I could not have expressed any better. I show up. Every. Damn. Time.

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  13. Commander,there is at least one sentient and rational Wordsmith scribing down there.
    Lang may yer lum reek,Chief

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  14. Fuckin' A Jim: made this abundantly clear. Show UP or Shut the fuck up.
    Except for the active term I was serving the country I voted and showed up. Meanwhile little pricks like this guy was fucking things up for the rest of us

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  15. Thank you, Jim. I don't know how you do it ( yes, whiskey helps, but is there ever really enough? ) but I know why you do it, and let my voice blend with the thousands--nay, milions -- who agree with you. Many, I think, may not start out that way, but you have a way of clearing away any doubts a thinking person might possess. These are bad times, yes, but we have voices, and yours is one I am proud to share.

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  16. This is one of your best, sir. Thanks.

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  17. i love you when you write like this. hard. TRUTH. pointing out the guilty with a loud voice.
    you- a coward? ha. never.

    as one of those far left really liberal voters, i agree with everything you said.

    and I show up. every. single. time.

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  18. Thank you. Bless you. Don't ever quit.

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  19. My laziness is soaking up your hard won wisdom. I am always grateful for your pists.

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  20. Damn! That was really satisfying!

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  21. Grateful we have you. Admire that you can go toe-to-toe with vulgar ignoramuses & yet eloquently articulate a righteous rage clearly, informed by impeccable values & a well-ordered mind.

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  22. Glad to see you back Chief. Wishing you all the best for your health and dealing with the weather. Thank you for expressing so well how I feel.

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  23. I am going to embroider this on a goddamn pillow: "People like you who put the burden of your duty on an 87-year-old cancer patient so that you could have the luxury of throwing your vote away, of not showing up, of using your precious franchise for some idiotic protest, instead of doing your goddamned duty like a citizen."... It'll be a big-ass pillow.

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  24. this is the crux of the matter. purity has no place in life and death politics- if the choice is between mediocre and fucking terrible, go for the mediocre every fucking time, for the love of all that is right and good.
    thanks for this essay- we need it now more than ever.

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  25. I've just taken to blocking third party/protest voters. I've told them, over and over, that you CANNOT build a house from the roof down. But they don't care - they're so busy lying on the floor, kicking their feet and screaming, that they won't hear it. And when they get marched off to whatever camp they're sorted into under the looming Fascist Dictatorship, they'll throw temper tantrums then, too. Keep telling it like it is, Chief. The adults will listen.

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  26. Holy shit, that's an amazing essay.

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  27. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  28. Jim, Thank you. I vote, and have voted in every election since I was eligible in 1988. Women died for my right to vote, and I won't waste it or dishonor their legacies. They did not fight in vain. Not for me. Great post.

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  29. You've got a way with words. Do carry on!

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  30. Bravo, Jim. Absolutely-fucking BRAVO.
    You are certainly - in my opinion - up there with two of the most highly-esteemed writers, thinkers, journalists, shit-disturbers and polemicists of the 20th and 21st centuries: Christopher Hitchens and Hunter S. Thompson. Were you to offer a silk-screened (or similar) reproduction of this essay for sale, I would proudly place it on my wall next to my signed copy of HST's famous "Politics is the Art of Controlling Your Environment" essay. And like it, I would make a habit of posting yours every election cycle.

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  31. I donate more to you than I do to anyone else, and that's because you seem to me to be the one indispensable voice on the Internet. Keep it up. You're not my God, but you are a helluva guy./

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  32. Thanks for this Jim. My mom served in both the Navy and Army National Guard. She brought my brother and I to the polls. 40+ years ago, we were hanging brochures on doorknobs for the man who is now my Senator. I vote every time, and the importance of this civic duty has been passed to my children.
    You hit the nail on the head as usual. They sit out, then bitch that things aren't as they wish. Children.

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  33. Bravo Zulu.

    You hit the nail on the head with this one. It’s a bus ride, not a marriage.

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  34. Jim Wright's next book: THE RANT AS HIGH ART a user's guide. ORDER YOURS TODAY.

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  35. Thank you for taking to task all of the people who found fault in an 87 year old Justice with cancer who fought so hard to live and serve, Bernie-purists, and Hillary-haters. It's my fervent hope that our Country survives long enough to teach them a life-lesson. Voting together as a majority in this Country matters.

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  36. I was taught that whenever you have a chance to vote, you should. There are so many, all over the world, who are not allowed to, at any point. So many who are threatened with death if they try. So many whose votes TRULY mean nothing, because the results have been predetermined from the beginning--not in a conspiracy theory way, but in a very sad, real-life way. What would those people give for just one chance to make their voices heard? Just one chance to change their circumstances for the better, or those of their children? One chance at something you can take for granted (for now anyway), and ignore and complain about the inconveniences of and opt out of because you feel pissy. If you don't want to vote for yourself, or your fellow citizens, maybe you could vote because they can't.

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  37. Thank you, Chief. i sincerely hope that person reads this.

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  38. Another brilliant piece. Spot on with everything.

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  39. Humorous.

    Personally I won't be gaslit into voting for a war criminal like Biden and certainly not a pontificating, hypocrite corrupt cop such as Harris.

    No.

    I'll take the asshole game show host who continues to refuse to embroil this nation in war.

    It's an easy choice.

    The democrats were never going to save you.

    Obama never deserved the peace prize either.

    Despite his faults, Trump absolutely does.

    And you know what, this election he gets my vote.

    Not sorry.

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    1. Let me guess, Rich, you're older and white and male, much like I am. Not as bright as most toadstools and with all the actual empathy of a rock. I'd say Jim Wright is worth about a thousand of you, but that's probably undervaluing him by an insane measure. We're rapidly sliding down the hill of fascism out here in the real world, but this imaginary concept of Biden putting us at war is more important to you. Shoo.

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    2. Trump didn't need to go pick a war somewhere in the world. He's got us tearing each others' throats out, at war with our own families and neighbors...perilously close to all-out, guns blasting, bombs exploding in our back yards Civil War. Nobel Peace Prize for the guy presiding over this hellish mess of a country? Not likely.

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    3. Jim, I think I love you. One of your best!

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    4. Back in the 70's an actual millionaire told me that only greedy fools and rubes do business with a Trump. The Donald has proven that in spades.

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  40. I wanted to stay home in 2016. I wanted to. But I held my nose and voted for Hillary. Biden wasn't my candidate, either, but by Dog I will vote for him.

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  41. With this one essay, I became a fan. Brilliantly expressed. Thank you for your continued service to our country, "Devil's Designated Driver".

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  42. Two years ago, when my decade old green card was up for renewal. I didn't renew it. Instead, I applied for citizenship. Not because I had some how become a flag waving, constitution worshiping, July 4th grilling American (although I do like a good July 4th cook out!) - but so I could have a vote in the country I called home. So I could look myself in the mirror and know I did *something* to get the orange baboon and his leeches out of power.

    So worth it.

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  43. Thank you for putting my rage into your words. Reading this column aloud has done wonders for my energy level. I'd say "and my resolve," too, but I am already resolved to stay the course and fight the fight.

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  44. Thanks for putting my thoughts into your words. Reading your column aloud always raises my energy level. I'd say "and my resolve," but I'm alrady as resolved as can be. Fight on!

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  45. When I was in my 20's, I was one of those dope-shits who believed I had to be all-in with a candidate or I would refrain from voting. Back in the 70's and 80's, it seemed like I had that luxury, because the ideologies were not as opposite, the choices not so cut and dried. Or so I thought. Maybe if I and others like me had not withheld our votes 40 years ago, this nation would not have embarked on the inexorable path that has led it to where we are today. Republicans were the devil then as they are now. The only difference is, in 2020, they've been so emboldened by political purists on the left that they are much less covert about who they are, what they care about, and where they want to take/have taken this country. So when you talk about "other generations" who "fell down on the job," you are talking about me. I take a particle of solace in the fact that I figured it out and changed my ways...but I also take responsibility for the damage done.

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    1. I voted for John Anderson in 1980. John ANDERSON - 3rd party. I'm complicit as well. (At least I didn't vote for Reagan, I thought! - but I might as well have, I realized later)

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  46. Wouldn't it be nice:
    “When it shall be said in any country in the world,’ my poor are happy, neither ignorance nor distress is to be found among them; my jails are empty of prisoners; my streets of beggars; the aged are not in want; the taxes are not oppressive; the rational world is my friend because I am a friend of its happiness’; when these things can be said, then may that country boast its constitution and its government.”

    Thomas Paine — Rights of Man, Part the Second

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  47. “The principles of a free constitution are irrecoverably lost, when the legislative power is nominated by the executive.” - Edward Gibbon, The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire

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  48. Chief, I just want to say how tickled I am that you posted this on my mother's birthday. She just turned 91 years young, although she'd never use that joking expression, because she's a realist and knows full well she's on the far, far side of young. She is not, however, on the far side of dumb or amoral or uninvolved or uncaring. She has two granddaughters and three grandchildren to help keep her that way: smart, and righteous, and involved, and caring. She'll vote this November, as will my father, both of them fully aware that this may be the last presidential election they ever see, and though both of them have a conservative history, I know for a fact that neither one will be voting for the grifting conman currently installed (like a defective water closet) in the White House. Their offspring's offspring and *their* offspring mean too much to them to consider such a mistake. And I'm pretty sure they'd both approve your post here. I know I do. Thanks again for speaking so eloquently and yet plainly and bluntly for so many of us. I'd share the link on Facebunk, but I earned myself a 30-day jail spell for commenting that Americans are notorious cheaters. I was, of course, given no opportunity to explicate my position, just summarily dismissed, not even aware if I triggered some algorithm or instead pissed off some report-happy maven. I'm glad you're still on there to speak for me. Please continue.

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  49. Heard on the radio this morning that Ruth Bader Ginsburg will lie in repose at the Supreme Court today and that Donald Trump will be "paying his respects" to her there. I nearly choked. First, if Herr Trump has no respect for anyone, he has none that can be given to anyone else. Second, it's good that RBG is secure in a closed casket, safe from the Groper-in-Chief.

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  50. Don't ever stop being this kind of angry, at those kind of people Thank you. You said all the words, and aimed them in exactly the right direction.

    We live in scary times, and if we all don't vote in the same direction, the times will just get scarier. And not voting for Biden, as someone said the other day, is a vote FOR Trump. Let's not start wandering into mickey mouse voting because we don't like Biden but can't stand Trump. He's all we've got, let's help him win.

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  51. Another version of these people who bug me are those who insist that we basically have no hope. Because here's the thing: some of us (who HAVE voted and even put in calls to congresspeople, btw) are dealing with actual mental illness as a result of this whole spectacle. I know I'm not the only one. People like me are dealing with the fear that if Trump wins, life will cease to be worth living - as in, suicidal urges. And then there are these people on here effectively implying that EVERY action we do is pointless because it's already all over and Trump is certainly going to take over.

    That is not encouraging resistance. That is saying that resistance is futile. Which is exactly what Trump's cronies want.

    What we need to do is foster hope for the future, AND to do our part to resist what is going on - for which hope for the future helps, not this airy-fairy idea of "oh it'll just work out" but rather the idea that resistance might actually be effective and that we still have a chance. This means NOT implying votes are pointless, NOT demoralizing protesters, and NOT hinting to people who have suffered mental health crises that the writing is on the wall anyway so they may as well lay down and die. Rather, acknowledge the grim reality, assure people they are not crazy - and don't spread abject despair and the idea that we already lost at the same time.

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  52. Brilliantly said, as always. I appreciate your ability to articulate the essence of how I feel about this and admire your fortitude dealing with this crap every day.

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  53. Voted in every election since 1974 -- even went to the polls for what I thought would be a primary, and it turned out that our precinct didn't even have any issues to vote for that Spring, nor candidates. The poll workers were pleased that I showed up though.

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  54. I still didn't have my driver's license when i turned 21. In Oregon that was the age for a drink and a vote. Me? I got driven down to the elections office to register. My folks believed it was that important. So far I'm about fifty fifty on presidents. But I stillkeep voting. It earns me the right to complain about the results. And those down ballot elections are even more important. What's the use of electing the president or governor or even the county commissioner they don't have support on the boards or in the legislature.

    It took about two election cycles for the voters to split into what became political parties. Some didn't get off the ground (thank heaven) some died on the vine. Think Federalist, Whig and free silver.

    And since Oregon is a recall and referendum state we got to be on the front lines back in the nineties. Please don't stop writing. You do it fifty times better than the rest of us and you have the background to back it up.

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  55. There are times I could do more. I don't speak up when I should. I don't write and broadcast my views, or work phone backs or go door to door. But for 42 years, since the primary before my 18th birthday, I've voted in every election with people on the ballot. (I missed a couple of Saturday bond referenda.) I've voted early when I had to travel for business. I've voted in every primary and general election since moving to China. And there's nothing that makes me prouder to be an American.

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  56. My first election was in 1980, where I cast my military absentee ballot for Jimmy Carter (and my division officer examined all ballots before signing the envelope, for future personnel evaluations if you didn't vote for Ronald Reagan). Much of my adult life I have been disenfranchised (receiving ballots after elections, and the long homeless veteran stint). When I regained my right to vote in 2012, I relished the opportunity to make my voice heard.

    I'm not sure about the rose brigade of Democratic Socialists on Twitter; I am one myself and did not sit out voting for Hillary Clinton. The alternative we have today was too frightening to me. I will not sit out this election either.

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  57. Glad you're back in the saddle again. Keep up the good fight--you're not alone.

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  58. So...
    Yeah. I'd call myself a Democratic Socialist. A Bernie Supporter, too. I held my nose and voted for Clinton. However, at that time I lived in a state where I could comfortably cast a protest vote and still not impact the election. You see...because not every vote counts equally. I and three million other people in that state could have all protest voted and Hillary *still* would have won. I'm sure you're talking specifically at that subsection of Americans living in swing states. Right?

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  59. You are fine.
    Bad writing pisses you off - you are a writer.
    Childish foolishness is worthy of condescending dismissal - you are developed adult.

    You are a coward. well, I got nothing.

    You love the Constitution of the United States. You chose to do what was hard and dangerous to defend and promote it. You are a patriot. And a warrior.

    You are loved and respected.

    I know you know. But so what - if having sons grow into men has taught me anything, it has taught me that knowing and hearing are two different things and both are valuable.

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